Friday, December 23, 2011

FIL Feria Internacional de Libros

So here in Guad they hold an International book fair every year. This is the first year we have been able to go. When I mentioned at work that I wanted to go with my girls I was told about how they have an area you can leave your kids so you can go look around. Right away I mentioned that my girls would be so sad if I did such a thing. My girls love books. And even in the states I refused to leave my kids with people I don't know. I just cant see how that would be a good idea no matter where you are. The entrance fee was only 20p and the kids were all free. We all had a blast. We made it to the FIL on the second to last day and actually during the last two hours. Most of the books were way to expensive to actually buy but the girls thought it was so cool to see so many books and in different shapes and sizes. Every time there was a place provided they sat to "read." (Only the 5 yr old can really read, lol) They had a couple activities and the girls loved them. We did buy a few books, one of the stands had all the classics for only $25pesos so we bought quite a few of those and some activity books for the girls. On the way to our truck we stopped for tacos and they were sooooo yummy. Anyway this was a lot of fun and I hope we can experience it some more next year and go more than once.


FM2 Renewal 2011/Work permit

Im so happy to tell you all that this year was a breaz compared to other years. First off I need to remind you all that I have decided that due to the cost we are just going to wait until next year and apply for residency.  Their is just more paperwork, tests and money involved in the citizenship so we have decided not to take that route. We went ahead and renewed this year. I went in one day that I had off and turned in my paperwork to tell them that I was working. Due to the fact that my FM2 is familial I don't actually have to ask for permission to work. Its more that I just have to let them know kind of like when you move. For that I just had to have a letter from my place of work saying why they wanted to hire me, I didn't even have to have my credentials verified which was nice considering I don't have an apostille nor translation for my nursing degree or license. While I was their for that I asked for the list to renew my FM2. It was very strait forward and easy. She even gave me all the paperwork I would need to pay the fee and to attach my fotos to if it went through. My husband was going to bring it all in for me so the only extra thing we had to have was a typed and signed letter saying that I gave him permission to do so. He turned it all in on the 14th (I would have been late on the 15th, gees Im becoming so Mexicana, lol). Anyway I waited till now to check the status because before it was always after Christmas that they would have it ready. Guess what it was processed completely ont he 14th and on the 15th it shows that I can come pick it up. Holy Cow. But on the site it looks like they are closed till after new year, pues ni modo. Ill go pick it up in Jan.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

My baby is ONE

I have to tell you I am so glad my baby days are over. Lily is so freaking cute that people just melt when they see her. She actually bats her eyes at people at just the right moment. Even as mommy its hard for me to not fall apart when she does it. On the day of her birthday we went with some really good friends of ours to the park and just hung out. It was so much fun.  I'm going to post a couple pics. Then later in the week we had her party at school.  I wanted to put a video on that showed the cake but I cant get it to work. Dang it!!!! It was a cute butterfly cake that I made.  We had a lot of fun at the party. I had the kids make coffee filter butterflies, we broke a butterfly piñata and ate a butterfly cake and butterfly topped cupcakes. Thanks to a care package I received ages ago I was able to throw the cupcake toppers together in no time and thanks to a different care package I was able to make cupcake holders out of parchment paper. Let me just tell you really quick how easy this was. All you have to do is cut 4inch x4 inch squares from the paper, Then find a jar or bottle that fits just right into your 1/4 cup measuring cup. IF you want better looking cups you need to round the corners off your squares. Center one or a few of the papers, (this depends on how much room you have, the bottle I used fit pretty tight and I could only do one at a time)  over the top of your measuring cup. Make sure when you push the bottle into the cup that it is going to be very tight. If the bottle you have is a bit loose in the measuring cup use a lot of pieces of paper. And whoa-la you have cup cake holders. As for making a butterfly cake all you have to do is make a round cake and cut it in four pieces then rotate the pieces until it looks like a butterfly. I used a cupcake for the head and put a pipe cleaner for the antennae.  I had also made really cute butterfly invitations.























Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

Well I have to tell you that I love pictures. In the past I havent been good about putting them on my blog because it was a pain and I couldnt comment after each one easily. Thankfully Blogger has updated and now I can. So this is a picture post. 

Sorry I had to delete the pics off my blog, I have decided to keep my blog public no matter how many hateful comments I get. If I made my blog private it would defeat the purpose so instead I will just delete the pictures and refrain from using names in attempt to keep things safe for us. 
Me and the girls made Pumkin cheese cake from real pumpkins. They are to young to carve pumpkins at Halloween so I let them help me clean this one. 


Lily climbed up on her sisters chair all by herself. TODAY IS HER FIRST BIRTHDAY!

Every year at Thanksgiving we put up our Christmas decorations. Papi always helps put up the tree and I do the ornaments with them. 


Alana took this. Im making Deviled Eggs. Not sure why Im making the turtle neck. lol

Alana wanted to take a picture of our Thanksgiving decorations. lol

Papi was off on Thursday and I wasnt so he did the Turkey. He did a great job. 

Only one of the five or six people we invited showed up but we still had a lot to be Thankful for



This year it was Joslins turn for the Angel. 



Yum!!! We had mashed sweat potatoes, green bean caserol, rolls, gravy, deviled eggs , the turkey and the cheese cake. 





Lily started walking with the assist of her toy the day before her birthday!


THE WISH BONE. Here I am explaining it to them. 

Joslin ended up winning. The bone was a little wet I guess because they had to practically wrestle over it to get it to break. 


There you go folks yet another normal part of my life in Mexico. We missed having more family around but all together it was another great Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 21, 2011

¿The Normal Life?

The other night I was talking to my husband and I said, "I actually have time to blog now and I feel like I don't have anything to write about."
He says, "Amanda you have tons to write about you live in Mexico."
"Yes but everything seems so normal to me now." I responded.
He looks at me, almost exacerbated,"Then write about that." (somewhere in here I'm thinking oh gee how boring), he continues, "I remember when you first started reading blogs and when you saw that Leslie from Motherhood in Mexico said something to that effect, it gave you hope. That is why you write is to give those other people hope about their life here. I think you need to write about how you feel that your life is normal."

So here is that post.

I'm a mother of three beautiful girls, who every morning wake up at 630. I get them dressed, brush their hair, make a quick breakfast they can eat in the truck and rush them out the door. When I drop them off at school their is almost always something I forgot to put in a book bag, and if not at least one aviso (message) for me to give to a teacher or caregiver. I then zoom off (well not really my truck is a bit broken and I cant go over 30mph) to the hospital. I park and chat with the garage attendant if I have time then run inside to work. On the way in I say buenos dias to everyone I pass even if they are in the middle of a conversation (I guess Im still getting use to that part). After finding out where I'm working for the day I go and care for patients. At the end of my day I'm watching the clock because I'm anxious to get my girls and go home with them. As soon as I can I run out to my truck, of course saying adios to everyone I pass and from time to time stopping to chat. Their is no real running in and out of places here. I pick up my girls, the older two are always running to me for hugs and the baby loves her teacher so much I have to pry her from her arms. I listen to any report from the teachers and we are off. I talk to the older girls about their day on the way home and when I get home I read their report books and check for home work. They do their homework while the baby plays. Then I have Alana do an English website while Joslin watches and repeats. At aruond 530 the baby takes small nap with her milk while I cook dinner. By the time dinner is ready papi is home, and is welcomed by lots of hugs and kisses all around. We eat dinner around 6pm and then the girls get to play and talk with papi about their day. Bath time at 730 and off to bed for the girls. My husband and I then either spend some time alone doing our own thing or doing something together. Traffic and driving here in the city feels a lot like St. Louis, I have Wal Mart (which I cant stand anymore) Sams (which I love) close by and fresh fruits, veggies, and meat on every corner. We have a doctor that we really like. He only costs us 30p a visit, and he is wonderful with my girls. I have figured out how to keep the bugs out of my house. And I actually like the idea of black widows better than brown recluse. (black widows stay home and are usually in a place out of reach for my kids, brown recluse hide in your close and bed).

On days off my girls wake up and crawl in bed with us for a little snuggle time then want to eat. After eating we clean the house, let them do crafts, maybe walk to the park, or play games. We go to church from 11-130 I help in the nursery and my husband helps with translation. We have friends who come over for Sat night collage football, and my girls are happy and healthy. To me this all seems like what I would have been doing in the states. Although I must say Im ALOT more laid back than I would have been if we stayed their. My digestive system is healthier because Im less stressed, and I am able to brush off things much easier than before. Some of this my have come with age (no Im not old) but I know it came a lot faster because of Mexico.

I barely notice anymore that when I'm a pedestrian I don't have the right away, and that I have to teach my kids to run across the street instead of walk. I barely notice that my tissue goes in the trash can and I have to empty that can every day if not twice a day. And what were the other things that were different living here than in the states. I just read a blog this morning that talked about them all and seriously I cant repeat it if I wanted to.

Yesterday we shopped for food for Thanksgiving and for the babys birthday. Lily is turning one this coming weekend. I still have to finish her whole scrap book and baby book and make all the decorations and invitations. This should be a pretty fun week.

This post is for all of you out their who may be struggling with the idea of raising your family here, or who have just moved and need some hope. It took me three years to get to this point. Dont push it, take things one day at a time or how people love to say here poco a poco. Adopt that phrase and do your best to live it. You can do it and you can be happy here. One thing is for sure though you need a supportive spouse who loves you enough to love on you when its hard and encourage you when you get frustrated. Believe me my hubby is far from perfect and has screwed up pretty badly in the past but this is one thing that he has done so well.

I think thats it for now.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

IM BACK BABY

And I don't just mean to blog land. This title is what I put on my facebook post my first day back in the hospital. For any new readers or anyone who just doesn't remember, I am an RN. I have so missed nursing over the last few years but it just wasn't possible at first for me to work. Its still pretty tough but for the most part I don't have any issues. We had an interesting first year in the city to say the least. But we are moving on and are so excited about the year to come. Nothing is ever perfect but we know that and when you are ready for it... well that makes it a little easier.

Basically let me tell you that we have literally taken a 50% pay cut, we moved to a smaller place (which we actually really like), and God blessed us with the fact that we don't have to change the girls school. That is the quick run down.

We didn't have any help with the move so that was a little tough but thankfully we are on the other side of it now. Lucky for you I didn't have net until now so you don't have to hear me complain. lol I still have quite a bit of organizing to do in the girls play area and pictures to hang but that can all be done poco a poco.

The first week of December I will be starting English Classes for the parents from the day care, and anyone else who wants to come. This will help me make up the cost that I owe the daycare. Basically it turns out she is just giving me a location (and clients) to hold the classes. Payments and everything for the class I will be dealing with directly. So now I get to still do the part that I enjoyed doing with the University and actually teach. I'm so excited about that.

Now back to the "I'm back baby part." I am loving the hospital, and I say this after driving home crying yesterday.  I had a pretty heavy day yesterday and then I had to talk with one of the supervisors about a few things that really were not that big of a deal but that were very frustrating to me. Basically I had a patient family member misinterpret my body language. The felt like I was nervous about starting their IV (which is actually something I enjoy doing). The thing is I'm not sure what it is about my body language that makes people think I'm nervous.  I have had the same problem with Issacs mom, and multiple other people. I admit I'm much more high strung than most people down here but I'm not nervous or anxious anymore. If anyone has an idea on what I might be doing that would portray this please let me know. I think getting some insite would help me out a lot. Really the tears just came from frustration and irritation that a patient would misread me. I never have had problems like that back in the states. And its just not something I'm use to. By this morning I had sucked it up and went back at it. That same patient was a lot more receptive to me today and I think realized that it was a misinterpretation. One good thing is we do have quite a few American or Canadian patients and I enjoy getting to help them out. I have interpreted quite a few times and even when they do have good Spanish it makes them feel better just to have a nurse to speak to in English. Right now I'm doing a lot of floor work and I think eventually they may have me doing more office type work but I'm really happy where I'm at. My husband is doing reservations for a rental company from the states and is really enjoying his job also.

Well that's quite a lot of blabbing for one day. I have so much to say about health care here and nursing here but I will save that for another blog. And really I would like to hear from all my readers to know if you would be interested in hearing that stuff. I get all excited about it but aside from the Mexican Trailrunner I'm not sure if you all are interested. Let me know please.

Halloween 2011

Well Halloween ended up being quite exciting this year. And I dont even have pictures of the best part. First me and the girls made pumpkin piñatas for a party with the Vaca family, and then we went "trick or treating" at a friends house. I was still a little bummed about the girls not getting to go "real" trick or treating. Well Halloween night I had totally forgotten about Halloween because we celebrated early. And we kept hearing some kids chanting something. For the longest time I couldn't figure out what it was. The finally I made it out they were saying "Quiermos Halloween" over and over. Then it dawned on me that they were prob trick or treating. I ran out of the house so fast it scared my girls and then I saw them....

THE FIRST TRICK OR TREATERS IN 3 YEARS!!!!!!!!

I was at first excited then I realized they were a block past my house. I debated screaming, "Quiero Halloween" really loud and then I figured I would just prove everyone right that gringas are locas. So I went in and explained to my girls what happened. My 5 year old could tell I was really sad that we missed them and said, "Mom maybe they will come back, and if they do we can give them our candy from the party." So we put their candy on a plate and waited......

Then they came in at least three more groups. We gave out all our candy including what I had from before to give the girls as treats. But the girls loved it and were not even sad about giving away their candy. I told them that for sure next year we will be going through the neighborhood chanting right along with the other children. Im already so excited for next year I just cant even tell you. So here are some pics from the piñata and party.

Sorry I had to delete the pics off my blog, I have decided to keep my blog public no matter how many hateful comments I get. If I made my blog private it would defeat the purpose so instead I will just delete the pictures and refrain from using names in attempt to keep things safe for us. 















Sunday, October 30, 2011

Missing HR

So I think its safe for me to explain a few things that happened to us over the last few months. First I want to say to all of you who are thinking of getting a job down here. Always remember if there are not benefits and they are paying you cash that you will be getting pushed around quite a bit. We got hired on to a place some time ago and at the beginning we were told they would help me with my work permit and that we would be getting all the benifits (seguro, infonavit, a savings, ext.). After quite a while we realized this wasn't going to happen. On top of all that the lady who was in charge of the administration had it out for me, and she happend to also be the "HR" person. As you can imagine we were in quite a bind. I dont really want to go into to much more detail on that subject just because Im so spent on it and just done with the whole thing.

The good news is that a week ago I started as a nurse at a hospital and have my work permit. Actually it turns out I didnt really even need a permit. My FM2 is familiar so all I had to do was notify them that I am working. It was the same type of thing as for when we move.

Right now Im just getting to know the place and how things work. The idea is that I will help them to get their Joint Commission Certification. It is a great hospital but when it comes to JCI we have a long road ahead of us. Im excited to be back in the hospital, and if you have been reading my blog long you know how much I missed nursing. I actually get off work at a decent time now and I hope to get some more blogging and reading in.

We have recently meet some new friends who we are quickly growing close to. He is here to go to Medical School and his girl friend is here with him. The greatest thing is that my husband and I both get along with them so well. And of course they adore my girls. lol Its nice to because we know they are not going anywhere for a few years.

Last night we celebrated Halloween and I plan to blog about that also. But in case I dont get a chance you can check out Jackies blog http://thevacafamily.blogspot.com/2011/10/twas-night-before-halloween.html

I do have some more pics, and if you check out her page that is my middle one in her undies. She really was dressed up for a little while but she is just and undies girl and when you live somewhere that isnt cold why not let them run around half naked if they want. lol

More to come. I hope soon.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Getting an online income

Gees I remember when I moved to the city and said I was going to start working that I promised not to neglect my blogging. Well guess what happened. Honestly I have been dying to write but some of the stuff I want to write about needs to wait just a few more weeks.

At that point I will have more time for writing and also feel like I can write from a different perspective.

Entonces...

One thing  have managed and can write clearly about is getting a bit of an online income. I have started a profile on ODesk and write articles for a company called. IIU (Internet Income University). This opportunity came thanks to a gringa friend who lives here in the same city as me. I have to say that really this is all thanks to this blog and the friends I have made through it. I met Rhonda through a friend on facebook but who really I originally met here on the blog. So although I have not been a good blog friend I have tried to keep up with people in other ways.

So I wanted to explain a few things about ODesk and getting paid if you live in Mexico. I had to do a lot of reading and figure things out before I found the best way so I want to share and make it a little easier for others. First I must tell you that the incomes on Odesk are all pretty low. But you can make 500usd a month if you work at it and that is a pretty ok sueldo (monthly income) for mexico. With that in mind here is what I found out. Basically the cheapest way to get paid is for Odesk to transfer your money directly to a US bank account (this is free). But if your like me and don't have one nor care to get one there are other options. Transferring to paypal only costs 1usd. BUT and this is a big but... if your paypal account was started in the states or if you put your location as the states when you started it you can not transfer to a bank in Mexico without paying like a 30usd fee (which is a lot of freaking money). So what you have to do is open a paypal account in Mexico and with your address in Mexico. Then you can add your Mexican bank accounts. The only thing you have to remember is that your name on Odesk, Paypal, and bank all should be exactly the same. Also if you transfer less than 1,500pesos you get charged 20p, which really isn't that bad. The other restriction is that if you don't connect a credit card to your pay pal you can only withdraw 5,000p a month. But most likely I will never need to do more than that anyway so this is going to work just fine.

I also want to write more about immigration and obviously what has been going on in our lives over the last months. All that is to come in the coming weeks. Things are going good for us now.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mexican citizenship on hold.

Well Im not to happy to write this post nor am I excited about the reasons behind it. This is only a temorary hold but not one I was expecting or wanting. But as the saying goes, "ni modo." God knows best and it looks like we have to wait until after november. I recently had a question by one of my readers about if I have a lawyer an if they should get one. We have never used a lawyer for the immigration process and dont plan to for the citizenship. You do not need one but if you have the money and are willing to spend it you will have a much smother process than I have. This is only one example.

The requisit that we over looked is that you have to have at least 6months left on your current visa. My FM2 is up in December giving me only four months. The guy who was there to accept my application was so nice and worked with us very much. This is one reason we will not get a lawyer. This guy is not going to let us screw up if its not our intention. I say it that way because he basically counceled us on the best way to do things and said that if we chose to go ahead and file now he would have accepted out application. More or less he said if we had applied in July we would have had a better chance of D.F. overlooking the 6month rule. He also said that we could still apply and hope for them to over look it. He suggested for us to wait because if they did not over look it we may have to wait quite some time to get our money and paperwork back. This would cause a problem with my renewal on my FM2 in December. He said that our paperwork was complete but gave us some suggestions on how to polish it up a bit for a better chance at me getting it. He also gave us a better idea of what the interview would be and told me I needed to practice my spanish some more. (I was so nervous and was having a lot of difficulty speaking.) I think just being in the office one extra time before the actuall interview will help me.
I know in the long run having to wait is going to be better for the over all outcome but it came as a blow. I cried most of the way back to work.

Here is our current situation.

  • We have to go to Tepa to get a different official copy of our marriage lic.,
  •  I will renew my FM2 in November (one month before its up) and have to pay that stinking thing one more time,
  •  my husband will then go to D.F. again for my carta (because by then the one we have will not be valid we are hoping me and the girls can go next time so we can visit with family),
  •  He suggested that I get another cirtified copy of my birth cirtificate because the one I hade was not blue but we are not going to do that, 
  • copy all pages of my passport (we only had the info page), 
  • get a migratory flow letter from Immigration (we will ask for this when I renew,apparently it only takes like a day to get it),
  •  Try to find a copy of my FM2 booklet( they recently went to a card form which for some reason does not have a certain number that he said could be helpfull to them, basically immigration doesnt use this number but external affairs does)
  • Make three copies of all forms.
  • He also suggested I read a book called Mexico tiera volcanos along with the book that is on the webpage. (http://www.colmex.mx/pdf/historiaminima.pdf)
  • Again I want to give you the list that is provided by the office, or actually the web page(http://www.sre.gob.mx/index.php/carta-de-naturalizacion-por-haber-contraido-matrimonio-con-varon-o-mujer-mexicanos)
He was also kind enough to give us all his contact information in case we had questions later. This guy was extreamly helpful, and again this is why we will not be getting a lawyer. 

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Certificate from D.F. for naturalization

Number 11 on the list of documents needed for naturalization by means of having a spouse who is a national is: Entregar constancia o certificado de no antecedentes penales expedido por autoridad competente a nivel federal y local depeniendo del lugar de su residencia, en original y fotocopia.

This is a letter stating you have no criminal occurrences from the federal and state. Here is a huge thing to think about first. These letters are only good for two weeks. Let this be the last thing you get together. My husband went and got my fed one a week ago Friday, so we only have one week left to turn things in. Im hoping for Monday. If your spouse is going to get your letter here is what you need.

Your birth cirt, appostilled and translated, Your marriage lic appostiled and translated (unless you got your lic transfered to Mexico,, this is really easy to do and I talk about it in a previous post), His ID, Your FM2 and your passport, and a letter of permission (ee this link http://portal.sre.gob.mx/conreinounido/pdf/Formato_carta_poder.pdf).  And make two coppies of everything (Always do this). You show up at Subsecretaria del Sstem Penitenciario Federal in D.F. The line is almost always very long, but according to my husband they are very organized. They take and finish with about 30 people every 15-20min so the line goes really fast. They also have someone who comes down the line checking that you have all the documents you need.

The local one you have to show up personally with a copy of your FM2, passport, and they apparently take a picture of you. Im going to do this Monday morning.

I hope this helped! Please ask if you have any questions.

Obtaining Naturalization and the risks

I hope to get this post completely finished and published this morning. Mainly because there is a commenter who likes to stir up fear and distress in people who already have enough to deal with.  And my whole intention of this blog is to help alleviate some of that stress in others lives.  This person likes to appear that they know what they are talking about and loves to leave hatefulness with each comment. I'm only explaining this because I have many new readers since the last time this person took the time out of their apparently pointless life to read and comment on my blog. A lot of times I block the comments to the benefit of my readers but this one had some stuff that I actually wanted to speak to. This comment indicated certain articles proved that I am "stupid" to choose duel nationality. In reality it has a whole section that I am going to copy and paste below to insure you that you will not loose your nationality if you choose duel citizenship. Please feel free to read the whole article. The person who sent this article my way apparently read the first few paragraphs and assumed it would cause fear in an uneducated person. But what actually happened is that I had already read this section of law and I know my rights as an American and what they will be as a dual citizen. The important thing to remember any time you are investigating a law is to read the law and or articles about the law to the end and be sure you understand all of what it is saying. Im not going to post the whole thing here but only the part that helps everyone to realize that you can have dual citizenship and that I will never renounce my American citizenship. Again I want to remind that I am obtaining mine through being married to and having children who are nationals.
If you want to read the whole law or article just copy and paste the title and google it.

obtaining naturalization in a foreign state (Sec. 349 (a) (1) INA);

In September, 1990, the Department of State ("DOS") issued a policy statement which dealth with loss of nationality. The policy statement indicated that DOS would presume a person intended to retain U.S. citizenship where:

  1. the person was naturalized in a foreign country
  2. took a routine oath of allegiance, or
  3. accepted non-policy level employment with a foreign government.
Such a person need not submit prior to the commission of a potentially expatriating act a statement or evidence of his or her intent to retain U.S. citizenship since such an intent will be presumed. It is important to note that the two expatriating acts which arise in the context dual nationality are given the benefit of this presumption.
According to the policy statement, the presumption that a person intends to retain U.S. citizenship is not applicable when the individual:

  1. formally renounces U.S. citizenship before a consular officer;
  2. takes a policy level position in a foreign state;
  3. is convicted of treason; or
  4. performs an act made potentially expatriating by statute accompanied by conduct which is so inconsistent with retention of U.S. citizenship that it compels a conclusion that the individual intended to relinquish U.S. citizenship.
Cases in categories 2, 3, and 4 will be developed carefully by U.S. consular officers to ascertain the individual's intent toward U.S. citizenship.
In order to ensure retention of U.S. citizenship, U.S. citizens may wish to assert their citizenship status by actions confirming a continuing intent to retain U.S. citizenship. These could involve a contemporaneous written statement confirming the citizen's desire to retain U.S. citizenship, submitted to a U.S. consulate or the DOS. The U.S. citizen should also continue paying U.S. income taxes, obtaining U.S. passports, and maintaining retaining property and other ties to the United States after the expatriating act takes place to evidence an intention not to relinquish citizenship. However, as stated in the DOS policy statement, such action is not necessary where the presumption applies.


Let me tell you I dont plan to be any of the numbered cases above. 


As to the other section that was posted
I only have to show you the first paragraph and Im not putting the italics in it they were already there.

Section 349 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 148), as amended, states that U.S. citizens are subject to loss of citizenship if they perform certain specified acts voluntarily and with the intention to relinquish U.S. citizenship.

If you googled the first article this law is shown as the second listing.

I will not ever renounce my citizenship nor will I take any oaths with tthe intention to relinquish my U.S. citizenship.

I hope this helped some of you who had questions. I know this not only spoke to the anon comment that was not signed but also to the otheres.

Jennifer I will post later today about how we got paper from D.F.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mexican Citizenship part II

Its on people, we have my letter from D.F. saying I have no federal offenses. Monday we will get the one from state and write our letters and fill out the application. The plan is to go to the SRE (http://www.sre.gob.mx/) on Tuesday or Wednesday. I'm not sure yet if I will be given my history test and interview then or if they will set up an appointment. I am studying pretty hard just in case. One problem is that I can not find any examples of the interview online except saying that it is up to the interviewer. So I'm praying that I get someone who is maybe in a hurry or just a really good mood and who likes Americans becoming citizens. I think Ill do OK if they drill me but it will make me nervous. And when I get nervous my mouth doesn't like to speak in Spanish.  I already wrote the list of paperwork needed on a different blog so I wont do that again but really the amount of paperwork needed for this wasn't all that bad.  The link I posted above is where you go to find your list. Each person is pretty specific as far as how you get the citizenship. After this craziness is over I hope to do some more posts on things like day care, work, and culture so please stay tuned even though I haven't been much of a sturdy blogger recently. ;9

Friday, July 8, 2011

Habits

Today I am hoping to get a few posts out that I started a long time ago and never finished. Thankfully when I have good ideas I write a little in a draft so I can come back to it later. This post comes because I suppose I thought after three years of living here I would be a much different person.

But in reality some habbits never die or die hard so they say.

For example when we moved here we didn't have a land line and only just recently goten one.  Due to our phone being through our cable company it always has to sit near the computer. Nine months is how long we have had it and I still walk into my kitchen when Im looking for it. I guess my subconscious feels the phone should be in the dinning room or kitchen. This is so weird to me every time I do it.

My eating times have started to cure slightly to the late times of the Mexicans now that I am working but my body doesn't like it. As of a month ago I still ate breakfast (something small) at 7am with the girls, maybe a light snack at tenish and a light lunch around noon. Then I would be ready for a full hearty dinner around six. Now that we work till 530 or 6 we eat dinner around 6 or 630 which kind of throws the rest of your meals off. Also the girls get a snack at school around 5 so they don't eat a big dinner like we were use to. Still my body tells me this isn't the way one is suppose to eat. The funny thing is its much healthier eating a small meal in the evening and the larger meal at lunch.

One thing that hasn't changed and Im pretty sure will not is that I love not wearing shoes at home. I have to admit that I do put them on a little more often but its because I don't have as much time to keep my floors clean. And of course my Mexican family thinks I'm insane but I'm sure this isn't the only reason so no need in changing it now. lol

And last but certainly not least is the seat-belts we finally were able to get a third seat-belt but in the back of the Jimmy for Alana. I was a nervous wreck every time we left the house and she wasn't in a seat-belt. I'm happy to say all my children are safely and appropriately belted in every time we are in the truck.

I feel like this was a pretty boring post and I appoligise. Post like these are more for me to document this kind of stuff for my later reading. These are things that when I moved here I just knew would never change and Im happy that they haven't. ;)

Things that have changed are good things like being more patient and calm and not stressing out as badly over anything and everything.

Spider Web

The one thing I have found absolutely amazing is how thoughtfull all of you are. I have been connected with so many people at just the right time through most of my readers. I imagine a spider web where people who I would never know end up knowing me through someone else thoughtful enough to join us together.  Usually this happens without me even looking for it, for example the auther of  Southenr Living is the reason Im now living happily and much better off in Guadalajara as compared to the small town of Tepatitlan (which I still love and adore by the way). She and I knew each other through blogging and as she read through some job adds she thought of me. Thanks again girl!
This time Im going to request for each of you to send the word out amongst the web of contacts and help me out. I may have a great job opportunity for a fellow English speaking nurse preferably native to an English speaking country. This most likely will need to be someone already living in Mexico or who is planning to move here already. I specify this because the pay will be good for here but not comparable to nursing wages in the states. Heres hoping I can help someone the way I was helped and of course I gain my nurse at the same time. ;)

One last thing, when I post from work the spellchecker refuses to check in English, so I am so sorry for how bad the spelling prob is on this post and any other I have posted from work. And if any of you have ideas on how that can be fixed please share.


Thanks all

Monday, July 4, 2011

Mixed Emotions

I have so much to catch up about my life recently but today Im going to write about the crazyness going on in my head and heart regarding the holiday today.

Let me tell you for about five years this was a very bad day for me. My husband had to leave me (his 8mo prego wife) on July 3rd. Obviously that year I was quite bitter about hearing our Anthom and Pledge. The following year he was still waiting for his appointment and I moved to Mexico the end of June the follwoing year. My first 4th of July in Mexico needless to say I was still quite upset about the idea. I still sang the Antem and recited the Pledge to my daughter who was now 2 yrs old and living in Mexico. My second year here I still had the bitterness but it was weakened a bit by homesickness. I still hadnt been able to visit my family at that point and the holiday reminded me of times we would get together. Last year there was little bitterness and a lot of homesickness. I again as I do every year did crafts with my girls and Im pretty sure we ate hotdogs. Well here we are again five years later.

This year I am missing the fair, the fireworks, the greesed pigs, mud vollyball (yes Im from MO), concerts, and my family. For the last week or so I was surprised at how unangry I was. And how I didnt want to laugh at every comment put on face book about our great nation. I really thought that all the bitterness was gone until this morning. I sat in my kitchen reciting the Pledge to my girls, and it just felt wrong. I felt like I was lying to them, like I was out right telling them a bold faced lie. As I repeated UNDER GOD or JUSTICE FOR ALL I keept thinking about the false ideas so many Mexicans have of the US. These notions are one huge pet peve of mine and Im am so worried my girls will end up with them. I dont want them to have this AMERICAN DREAM that everything there is better, and that anything can be done there. Its not true and so many people here are raised with it. And then here I am feeding it to them myself just because its Independance Day in a country Im not even living.

Of course I will still have them practice the Pledge again and make a flag when we get home tonight. And I will smile and act like Im happy about it. But to be honest it feels yucky! Why will I do it anyway...  Im not sure. I think mainly so when they do go visit the states they still feel slightly at home, that they fit in, that they dont get stared down or looked at badly for no knowing it when they go to a baseball game.

Some patriatism ehh, only so my kids will fit in later in life.

So... this is more than three years after the initial verdict. Im sure it will get better in a few more years but as for now,  Im not quite there yet.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The certainty of uncertainty

Any one who has lived here in Mexico long can decipher the title of this post. As of yet I still get anxious and frustrated with the certainty of uncertainty around here. To be perfectly honest the only thing you can ever be sure of is that you are rarely sure of anything. Especially if your native language is not Spanish! I find a lot of times todavia that I miss huge sections of meaning in conversations. I will go home and talk to Issac about a conversation we had with someone and find out I was way off. It makes you wonder if you really know anyone or if you ever really understand whats going on. Funny thing is this isn't even what my post is about it just falls under the uncertainty category.

Every since we moved to Guadalajara our job has been a whirl wind. One min not getting paid, next min moving on, next min not moving on, then later changing roles, then maybe moving on, then changing roles..... ext. The other thing that has been up and down is our hours, I do a lot of stuff from home but I'm finding that this is nearly impossible when Issac is at work all day and I'm here with the kids. (Yes I could be spending this time right now working but instead I'm needing to rant... lucky you) On top of this I'm expect to be giving a class at the school which is 2 hours as often during the week as I can. The sticky part is finding part time child care, and toting Alana to and from school. We have been looking into day cares but really I think what we need is a kinder that has a day care. We are suppose to be getting a plan from one via email today and I'm hoping we can take some time to go visit two tomorrow. All in all we are going to end up spending as much on day care as we do on rent every month. Which means no savings or paying back my dad for the hospital stay (having lily). At least not for a while anyway.
The thing is I know I shouldn't stress over this stuff and that God has pulled me through much stickier situations but for some reason the lump in my chest wont listen to reason. I have only felt true anxiety during one stage in my life and it was during my time in the states with Alana while Issac was here. I'm trying so hard to fight the idea that I might be letting it back in again. I dont believe it could ever get that bad again because now when i start getting all anxious Issac is here to calm me down.
The uncertainty comes in that once we finally do find the place to bring the girls no one really does part time. So I will be paying them for full time care and may not really need it. I'm sure many mommies out there can relate to this. So do you let the kids stay there full time and just come home and clean on off time or what? Does that sound horrible. To be honest in my present state a little time at home without the niñas sounds really nice. Gees some of you are shaking your heads thinking how horrible I am but its the truth.
Well thats that folks. To be honest, aside from this speed bump things are good. We still miss our friends but know that is life, Issac and I are happy, my girls are healthy, and we know things will work out. But sometimes chatting with all of you about things helps A LOT!
And here is a little regalito de dios for you

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Our visitors

Our visitors left us Friday morning very early. They had been here a whole week and a half. The Kennedys and Bryan are some of our closest friends and we miss being able to hang out with them other than skype calls. While they were here we got a lot of time to hang out and just be together. Actually we got more of that than originally planned due to some illnesses and a break in. Tell you what Ill just get the bad news out and over with then tell you about the fun we had. On their second day here our house got broken into. Our brand new Xbox kinect (which they brought down for us due to how expensive electronics are here, the cash we had given them for all the stuff they brought us (which was ALOT), and their bag which had their camera and cell phone in it all got stolen. Along with the physical this person stole our sense of safety and comfort. Thankfully we as well as our visitors believe in the security of Christ and know that nothing will befall us that he will not see us through. After about a day of high tensions and I would have to say fear and anxiety on my part at least we all decided it was time to move past it and not let this person ruin their entire trip. Also about a day after that my dear friend Samantha was throwing up all night and took a few days to recover and once she recovered Bryan got sick at his stomach.

Now all that boohooo aside we did have some great times out and inside the house. We took them to some parks and everywhere we went we got to show them the Mexico we know. They also got to join in on our first bible study. We have started an English Bible study here at the house which we are so excited about. This meant a lot to us that we got to all have a study together. I will post more about our bible study later.
For now I want to share some pictures that I think show how much fun we had and how much we love these guys.
Thanks for coming!!




Saturday, May 7, 2011

Kids say the darndest things: La batalla de Puebla

As most of you well know 5 de Mayo is not the Independence nor Revolution day here in Mexico but is a celebration of a big win. La Batalla de Puebla is celebrated mainly in Puebla and in a few other areas but not here. Alana got the day off school but that was about it. She did come home yesterday with a color page of a guy with a gun and canon that said la Batlla de Puebla on it. On the way home from school I asked "So Alana what is that picture about."
"Well this guy is a war hero." Says Alana
"What happened in that war" I ask
" The Mexicans didnt want people in their desert so they tried to kill them."
"Oh my!" I exclaim holding back my laughter. " And then what happened"
" Well the people just walked away." Saying it with a look and tone as if I should have already known this.
"I see."

So there you have it folks 5de Mayo was when the Mexicans didn't want other people in their desert and when they tried to kill those people they just walked away.

I love children.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dia Del Niño 2011

One of my favorite holidays in Mexico was this weekend. And its seems really that it is semana del niño. We celebrated with the girls yesterday by taking them to the park for a picnic and they got to play Peter Pan with Papi. I got to be Wendy and protect baby Michel on the blanket. Papi made the girls choice dinner which was burgers and we got pan panadero. Joslin actually sings the song now. lol



Sorry I had to delete the pics off my blog, I have decided to keep my blog public no matter how many hateful comments I get. If I made my blog private it would defeat the purpose so instead I will just delete the pictures and refrain from using names in attempt to keep things safe for us. 

As you can see The Captain was even hiding in trees to sneak up on the unsuspecting lost boys.

Then today at church they had a party in their class rooms. The girls came out with a bunch of toys and candy, and from what I hear they got cake, snack drinks, sandwiches, and chips during the party. Also as you can see Joslin got her face painted. Even the baby got a big marshmallow bear which will be given to one of her older sisters. And on top of all this Alana still has her school party on the 4th.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April photo update!!!

I love this time of year. To me it represents love. The main reason of course is due to Pascua and the resurrection of Christ. It is amazing to think that God could love me this much. The next reason is because our anniversary is in April. And lastly of course there is spring and the coming of new life and what that means. With that brief description here is the update.
We have been doing activities for Easter to help the girls remember the real reason for Easter. Here are some of those photos.




Also we got to go to a passover dinner at church. It was very interesting and enlightening. We learned about the Jewish traditions and the meanings behind them. The pastor also tied in the relation that most of these traditions have to Christ. I had hoped the church would have pics up on the web page of that night but they dont as of now. One tid bit that I was happy to take away is that during the dinner the Jews eat a boiled egg. They do this because the egg represents the hardness of Pharaohs heart. I liked this because I often get asked down here why we do eggs. I never was sure and I usually answer that I think it has to do with new life, spring, and or fertility. But this answer always came up short for me because we are basically saying that a dead egg is a sign of fertility. So I plan for this idea to be more incorpirated into our Easter learning in the following years. And to be honest I have always left passover out of the teaching I do with the girls. I usually just talk to them about the resurrection but considering the passover was the last celebration Jesus had I feel my pastor is right in including it in the teaching.


For our anniversary this year we actually had a baby sitter which was so nice. We got our girls to bed then got all dressed up and headed out for the night. (well really only a few hours but its more than we have had for a long time) We went to a Tango Restaurant. The food was unbelievably good and the entertainment was so much fun. Every "fancy" restaurant Iv been to so far in Guadalajara was missing out a lot food wise. The decor and service is usually great but the food is mediocre. I had filet miñon and Issac had a steak and I cant say Iv had a better one since Iv been in the states. On top of that the prices were reasonable, sure there were plates that were 2-300p but total we spent less than 500p and we were not even trying to limit ourselves. Below are some pics. The pictures of the dancers didnt turn out all that great but you get the idea. They were great and now I want to learn Tango!!!



Then we got to go to Jackies house from the blog "The Vaca Family" and dye eggs. Shes such a good blogger she prob already has the pics up from that day. ;) We had so much fun and the girls loved it.





And then of course there was Easter morning. My cousin had sent me a box of Easter stuff but thanks to Mexico shutting down on Thursday I wasn't able to get it. Alana had once again asked if the bunny could bring her a flash light. I really wasn't planning on that happening but Waldos had the cute little lanterns. For those of you who live in or near a city if you can find a Waldos they tend to have at least a few things for America Holidays year round. The girls spent much of Easter morning in their closets with their lanterns. ;)





Wow so are you on overload!?!?! I could have broke this post up but its all within the same few weeks and we have had a blast.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dia del niños

This is one of the things I love about Mexico. And this year since Alana is in school I´m finally experiencing the full extent of it. This Friday the kids are putting on a circus show for the parents. This is kind of a culmination of last day before spring break and the start of Dia Del Niños celebration. I'm really excited about it and for sure pictures to come. Today Alana came home with a coloring book titled Estos son mis derechos. These are my rights. And here they are:

Si tenemos alguna discapacidad es uestro derecho recibir atención adecuada a nuestras necesidades
If I have a disability it is my right to receive attention according to my necessities.
Todas las niñas y los niños tenemos derecho a ser tratados con amor y respeto.
All boys and girls have the right to be treated with love and respect.
Es derecho de todas las niñas y los niños el tener una familia.
It is a right for all boys and girls to have a family.
Todas las niñas y los niños tenemos derecho a jugar
All boys and girls have a right to play.
Niñas y niños tenemos derecho a alimentarnos sanamente.
Boys and girls have the right to healthy food or meals.
Tenemos derecho a expresarnos libremente y a que se nos tome a cuenta.
We have the right to express ourselves and be heard.
Es nuestro derecho recibir educación gratuita.
Its our right to receive free education.
Tenemos derecho a ser tratados con igualdad.
We have the right to be treated equally. (this one has a picture of kids from all nationalities and one kid holding a globe, I love it)
Niñas y niños tenemos drecho a la salud.
Girls and boys have a right to good health.
Tenemos derecho a profesar la religion que nos inculquen nuestros padres.
We have the right to profess the religion that our parents instill in us. (And here in Mexico this even goes for Christianity in schools. There is not a big uproar when the name of Christ is mentioned)
niñas y niños tenemos derecho a un medio abiente saludable.
Girls and boys have the right to a healthy environment.
Tenemos derecho a reunirnos libremente y a participar en lo que nos interese.
We have the right to get together freely and to participate in what interests us.
Todas las niñas y los niños tenemos drecho a un nombre y una nacionalidad.
All boys and girls have the right to a name and nationality.

The coloring booklet was given out by the CEDHJ the Comision Estatal de derchos humanos Jalisco. And if your spanish is good or your just interested here is their web site. http://www.cedhj.org.mx/

Sunday, April 10, 2011

caca

A friend who I have recently deemed my blog idol write this post (http://www.motherhoodinmexico.com/2011/04/kids-say-darndest-things-spanish-friday.html) and made me think of a great idea.

Yes the title of this post is a bit different than most but it will make since believe me.

One thing that is different about raising children in Mexico is language. My girls are growing up learning both. Alana was mainly English speaking until the age of two but Joslin is learning both from the get go. As with any kid when they start using a new word we have to figure out what it is and repeat it to her with the correct pronunciation. The problem is we first have to figure out what language shes speaking. And as with English of course Spanish words sometimes come out slightly funny. Shortly after learning her first few words Joslin started saying CACA!!!! And she said it a lot. I was so frustrated about it and was actually a little upset with Issac because I knew I didn't use that word and neither did her sister. Issac kept reassuring me she didn't hear it from him. Then came the day of realization (thankfully). Jos had just asked me for something and I handed it to her. When I did she said "caca" and took of. I literally did the head cock thinking position and went and got her a cookie.
"Here is a cookie, Joslin."
"Caca, mommi."
I then smiled and Issac and I had a good laugh that night.
She was telling us Gracias this whole time and I was upset by it.
I had almost forgot that her Gracias sounds like caca when she said it to a cousin who gave her something and he had a surprised look on his face. I quickly explained that she was saying Gracias and of course then he got a good laugh.

So Caca all for reading my blog. jajajaja

Friends at the Embassy

We finished Lilys papers the other day for the US. Instead of putting a list of what all we had to have I am just going to post the link and tell you how our day went.
http://guadalajara.usconsulate.gov/service/passports-and-citizen-services/consular-reports-of-birth-abroad.html
If you go to this site and read through it well you shouldn't have to much trouble getting the papers done.
There were a few glitches in the system and I will tell you how to get around them. First of all the link that is on the site for the Consular Birth Abroad application doesn't work. After many tries and two phone calls I was advised to google it. When I did I came up with this site and the form. First off this is what I googled (CRBA Application Form DS-2029) and it came up like forth on the list.
http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=en#sclient=psy&hl=en&safe=off&site=webhp&source=hp&q=CRBA+Application+Form+DS-2029&aq=f&aqi=g1&aql=&oq=&pbx=1&fp=7b425d6fdff6411c

The other problem we came across was trying to actually book the appointment. I checked at least three or four times a week for a few weeks and finally gave up and called about it. This is the site you go to make your appointment and thankfully they have a phone number right at the top of the page. The good thing is that this phone number goes directly to a person and not a machine.
https://evisaforms.state.gov/acs/default.asp?postcode=GDL&appcode=1

What they told me is that you actually need to check it almost twice a day. Basically the officers that do the interview go in at random times and add their availabilities. I did this for a couple days and finally got my appointment. That was a bit of a pain but really it could have been worse.

Our appointment was set for 8am and we got down there around 720. The line outside was already half a block long so Issac dropped me at the door and went to park with the girls. We had to bring the two older ones because we didn't have a sitter and didn't know till the day before that we wouldn't have one. By the time Issac made it to me they were already letting people in. He dropped the older girls off with me and went with the baby to get her pictures taken. They actually turned out so cute. He got back just in time, I almost got called to the door but the officer changed his mind. A few minutes after Issacs return we were called into the little room where they check you. We have done this before so we came prepared... or should I say unprepared? Because your basically not allowed to bring anything in with you. Since IM nursing the baby this really is no big deal. The little room felt a lot like what you go through at the air port and the officers were really nice to us and the girls. Then you leave that room and enter the office itself.
Issac instantly went sour and claimed he hated this place. I knew from last time the reason is because it looks exactly like the office in Juarez where he was so badly treated. He did his best to keep his head up but I could tell he was antzy and bothered the whole time we were there. When we went in we got a letter and waited to be called. This didn't take but ten minutes or so and this was when we turned in all our paperwork. The only thing that I didn't have was our marriage lice which I was thinking I didn't need. I explained my reasoning and the accepted my papers. The told me I would be called by the cashier to pay. Again this only took about ten minutes and at this point I only paid for the CRBA. I had to wait till it was approved before I could pay for the passport. The next waiting was the longest maybe an hour and a half or so. When we got called up we were happy because although they had a toy corner for the kids my girls were getting restless. As we approached the window we were greeted warmly which was a relief because I think this is the moment when Issac most remembers what he went through before.

Then came the surprise and the reason for the name of this post. After a pleasant hello how are you, I was asked, "Do you write a blog."
"yes.." I said a little hesitantly
"About your family and living in Mexico," she said.
"Yes, yes I do." I said a little more confident.
Then she tells me how she has been following my blog since she found out she would be moving down here. I guess to say a friend at the embassy is a bit of a stretch but really all my readers are more than acquaintances seeing as they know my whole story. So then my husband smiles and says, "See honey, your famous."
Hee heee this is obviously a stretch but it was really exciting to meet someone sort of out of the blue, who reads my blog.
Anyway she had us hold up our right hands and swear that all we had said was true to the best of our knowledge. Then she said that it was ok that I didn't have the marriage lic because they still had it on file from the one I did with Jos. That was a relief and we were thankful they did this. Its one thing you wont see the Immigration office down here doing. She then gave me the form to pay for the passport which only took a few minutes.
The only thing left was to pay multipack for delivery service and we were off. Oh I didn't mention that during the wait the multipack worker had given us the forms to fill out so that was already done at this point. Its so great to see some efficient work when you dont see it very often.
So now we wait on the packages. But at least we know they were approved and my Lilpil can go with me if I need to go to the states.

So here is my shout out to my readers whom Iv yet to meet and those of you whom I have, Thanks so much for reading.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring

In Mexico one of the many ways spring is celebrated is by children dressing up like Animals. I was a bit slow at learning this but next year my girls will be cute woodland creatures. Let me tell you how I figured this one out. A couple Sundays ago my husband let me know that the girls were suppose to dress up in a costume for the following Sunday. The following Sunday happened to be the day we were "graduating" from our class and I assumed it had something to do with this. The Friday before I had seen some kids outside a tienda dressed like a lady bug and a bunny. I thought to myself oh how cute they must be celebrating spring. But was I bright enough at this point to connect the two events before church. The answer is NO, so we ended up dressing Alana like Arial and Joslin like Tinkerbell. To be honest we didn't have animal costumes anyway, and Alana did have another princess in her class who I knows parents are both Mexican. This made me feel a little better as the reality of it hit me during the service when I saw a bunch of woodland characters running around. Ether way my girls looked supper cute and everyone kept saying "ohhh que linda" as we walked by. I wonder how many of them were thinking, "I guess she didnt understand." lol The good thing is I can laugh about it and plan to get animal costumes for next year. ;) Here is a pic of my Spring mermaid and fairy. Oh and an updated pic of mi puerqito.


Sorry I had to delete the pics off my blog, I have decided to keep my blog public no matter how many hateful comments I get. If I made my blog private it would defeat the purpose so instead I will just delete the pictures and refrain from using names in attempt to keep things safe for us. 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Casa Jugar

Hey everyone I hope all is going well.


Most of you know about the childrens home Issacs Aunt runs in Monclova, and for those of you who dont Im adding information on this note. I wanted to help Tia Betty (Issacs Aunt) get the word out about some changes they have going on. Really this is a good thing, the government is putting more restrictions and safety requirements on the homes but they also are not helping to pay for these upgrades. Homes like Casa Jugar are run on prayers and the love of people. So please read below and if there is anything you can do please contact me and Ill get you set up with them.
I have personally spent a lot of time there and know that the children are well taken care of and loved.

First, a brief description of our ministry.

We are a non-profit organization with over ten years in this ministry.

Our lord Jesus Christ called us to share the gospel and help children victims of abuse, neglecting, abandonment, extreme poverty, violation, etc in our city. We are aware of the need those children and their families have to know our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and have him as their savior. Our ministry is based on that principal. We provide them with housing, food, clothing, proper education, family values, among other basic needs.

The enforcement of these requirements is based on several different issues and disasters found in different foster homes, like fires, lack of good service and illegal actions, such as fake adoptions.

By law, we must have a “Feasibility license” which is issued once we’ve covered all of the following:



Be legally Constituted
Have Internal Regulations
Have a license from the civil protection department
Have a license from the health department
Have a primary care physician
Have a nurse
Have a psychologist
Have a social worker
Assistants
Cook
Driver
Maintenance personnel
Equipped doctor’s office
Dormitories
Dining room
Administration office
Recreation area
Rest area
Insurance



The secretary of the civil protection department visited us and among other things, these were some of her safety concerns:



Electrical wiring and system repair
Relocation of butane tank with a chain link fence
Chain link fence around the water cistern



With the blessing of The Lord our God we’ve been able to slowly meet part of these requirements. Here’s a few:

We have created new internal regulations and statutes that have been legally written by an attorney. (cost: $5,000 pesos). these regulations were sent to the main office in capitol city Saltillo.



Our constitution has also gone under several changes based on the new requirements. (Cost: $7,000 pesos)This charter will be presented at the Public Property Records Office.



The license that the civil protection department issues are based on a certification a supervisor gives. There has to be a contingency plan, first aid training, evacuation route, fire extinguisher training, etc.

The cost for this certification is $13,500 pesos. The Lord has shown us His favor, since the certified person we found is Christian. Him and his wife came to see our home and told us they would do it and we would only have to pay for the paperwork and other expenses, such as evacuation and extinguisher signs. It would be about $4,000 pesos approximately. They will also give us a good deal on the fire extinguishers we need.



We were also able to find a doctor and a psychologist that are voluntarily helping. We still need a nurse, a social worker and a secretary.



There’s also a person who is helping as the chief of maintenance and he is doing some plumbing and electrical repairs. There’s still a lot to do when it comes to maintenance:

Chain link fence around the cistern and butane tanks
Replacement of old piping ($4,000 pesos aprox.)
Install conduit for the electrical wiring underground and rid of the old obsolete wire
Drywall (sheetrock) exposed areas in different locations and replace old drywall
Build a nurse’s station
Replace broken water gauges
Replace light switches and set them at a certain height
Fix basketball court
Fix soccer field



We believe all these requirements can be met because we can see that God is helping us in so many different ways. We invite you to help us mainly with your prayers, but also with labor or an offering according to your hearts. Our desire is to continue doing this work, witnessing the gospel not only to the kids, but also to their families.

I have not received instruction from our God to give up and not continue with casa hogar; things have not been easy since the beginning of the year, and even though we grow tired and feel week we press on. The facilities we are in are very old, this used to be a seminary school back in the 50’s so you can imagine how much work is yet to be done. Our furniture as well is not that new, but our main focus is not to give and have fancy things for the kids, but to give the love, warmth and care only found in our Lord that they so desperately need.

God gave us this ministry back in the year 2000 through His word in 2nd Corinthians 9:8 “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things, at all times, having all that you need you will abound in every good work”



Once again, thank you for all your love, support and prayers

May our Lord bless you abundantly!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Getting use to living in Mexico

Lately I have had quite a few of those moments where you look around and think,"Wow, not to long ago this would have seemed very strange to me." Ill share them with you, then I would love it if you would share yours.

1) While shopping at the tiangis we saw a fish stand that looked excellent. His tuna steaks were a great price and looked so good. We told him we wanted some. Hes says no problem but these have been here a while and I dont have enough to fill your order anyway. If you can wait just a min we will bring in the other fish. Ok no problem. The kid standing close by immediately goes off down the isle. While we wait we buy a coke from the cloths stand behind us and let Joslin the two year old point and try to name all the fish and sea food laying out on the ice. Then up the isle comes the kid with a cooler on wheels with a fish head out one end and a tale out the other. This fish was huge!!! They plop it up on the cutting board and right there in front of us all start to cut it up. And we all just continue talking as if this is no big deal. He then cuts us some thick red lovely looking steaks, we pay and were off. It wasn't till I was in the truck that I realized this should have been odd to me.

2. At almost every major stop light in Tepa there are people hacking items from pens to phone cards, to kiddy pool, and large maps (this list could go on forever). Also there are those who do an act with fire batons, dancing, or try to clean your window. I basically refuse to give any of these people money because I know from looking around their are places hiring and these guys have made the choice to be out here. What made me saw wow this time is that Im so use to them being there now and I just dont even make eye contact or look at their items anymore. I also automatically just shake my finger and mouth NO to the window washers with out a second thought.

3. This one I was kind of sad about when I noticed it today. I take for granted that there are many places where I can look at the horizon and see small mountains. I just adored this when I first moved to Mexico. And since they are larger here around the city than Tepa it use to be one of my favorite reasons to come to the city. Today I was staring right at one of them and was to busy inside my head to notice. When I did notice I thought yeah I see it every day.

4. Other things I take for granted and I wonder how I ever lived without them is the Carnaceria and Papaleria close to our house. Today we went to both we spent less than 200p at each and you wouldn't believe how much we got. The crazy thing is that these places are so small but always seem to have everything you are looking for. If you dont see it just ask and they will pull it out of somewhere. The Carnaceria we go to is so clean and organized. And the fun thing is it has all the normal every day stuff but they also have a pretty good selection of specialty items.

My thought is that I need to be putting more of these things in writing so I dont forget them as they become a part of my every day life.

I think that's all for now. I have actually been trying to make notes as I think of things to blog. I often have great ideas and by the time I get to sit down and write a post they have all gone.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

bookmooch

Many of you who have been reading my blog awhile have already read a post about this site. But I have quite a few more readers now and a lot of them are here in Mexico. This site is a book sharing site. Basically you post an inventory and you send books. Every book you add and send you get points and can order from other people all over the world. If any of you join let me know so I can check out your inventory.

bookmooch.com

Monday, March 21, 2011

TB vaccine Mexico 2011 / Also other healthcare info

I blogged about Lilys vaccines awhile back. Here is a bit of an update. Her TB vaccine was given to her Feb 2. Usually with in 2-3 weeks you get the lump then in another couple weeks you have weeks of gross green pus coming out. We waited and waited and waited and never did Lily get her lump. A month after her vaccine she had a cold and we took her to the doctor. While there we explained about her vaccine. The doctor told us to wait until it had been a month and a half and if still nothing showed we should bring her back to the nurse who gave it to here. Its kind of odd but our "family doctor" is a walk in consult out of one of the pharmacies. We tried a couple different pediatricians here and didn't like any of them. We know this particular doctors hours and she is great with the girls. She doesn't jump to prescribing antibiotics every time we bring them in with a cough or runny nose and the girls like her. I told her about some of the things the other pediatricians told me and she agreed that they were off. So we told her she was now our family doctor and she was great with that. The only thing about this is that at pharmacias they dont keep any type of patient records. So you kind of have to keep them yourself and stay on top of things. Also if we ever need to go to the hospital we wont be visited by her. Our appointments are only 30p each that's a little less than 3usd a visit so its worth it to me to have a competent and cheap doctor. We were planning on taking Lily back next week anyway because she is due now for her four month shots. And low and behold yesterday the lump showed up. Its not in a circle like Joslins was but more of a line and almost a 1/2 inch long. I hope this doesn't mean her scar will be like that. So we have some nastiness to look forward to in a couple weeks. We are still going to go get her four month shots sometime next week also. Ill keep you updated.
For my husbands recent procedure we ended up going through the private system. You see here the seguro or public system actually does this procedure for free. But when we tried to go through them we couldn't get a hold of anyone. We looked into the hospital where I had Lily and my OB suggested a urologist. It cost us about 4,000p total including the doctor appointments and labs beforehand. We still have one or two appointments coming up which will be around 500p each. As with before I still think Mexico's health system is structured way better than the US. I feel like I have a lot more options and I´m not paying an arm and a leg for insurance.

St. Patrics Day party

We had so much fun this weekend. We had at least 6 families over for a St. Pats bar-b-q. In order to decrease the work load a little we had everyone bring their own grilling meat and a side dish for a pot luck. My husband had his little procedure done on Friday (yeah for me and freedom), and the party was sat so it was kinda hectic for me. But he helped with what he could help with and it was all really great. We already had the party planned when the doctor gave us his date and he refused to let me change the date. He knew how excited I was about having everyone over. Anyway a couple of the families write blogs that are on my blog roll, arms wide open, the vaca family, and refried beans. The other families I meet either trough facebook or just out and about. I had papers printed up for the kids to color, we had the pool ready for them and they also had fun just playing in the girls room. The only thing I regret is that I feel like I was to busy to talk to anyone very much. There were at least two of the families that this was our first time meeting them and dont feel like I know them much better than I did before. But this was just a start to many other get togethers I do believe. A funny thing that came out of having this party is that my husband and I are kind of rediscovering what we love about each other so much. For example I'm a pretty upfront person, and Issacs is a pleaser. Basically if its not a work situation and your at my house I speak my mind and let you see the real me. I'm far from fake and what you see you get. Because speech, and body language even, have a lot to do with this part of me I guess Issac really hasn't seen it in a long time. Anyway I think everyone ended up having a good time and I hope we get to do it again.



Tuesday, March 15, 2011

visitors coming

Hey all, we actually have friends coming down in May. We are so excited!!! My mom came recently but other than her no one has come since we first moved to Mexico almost 3 years ago. We want to show them a great time. Any ideas on what we should do in or around Guadalajara would be much appreciated.

The differences

I have been thinking lately about all the differences between living in a small town in Mexico and living in the city. My life has changed so drastically over the last 6 months sometimes its hard to remember what it was like before. Let me tell you for the most part all is so much better. Just to get it out of the way Ill start with the things that were better in the small town. We seem to be sick a lot more often here. Its like there are just more germs in the city. And... well... that's all the bad stuff so now we get to move on. One of the biggest realizations came a month or so ago. There are so many opportunities here for us. In the small town my husband was working almost 12 hours a day 6 days a week and it was so horrible for our family. We recently found out how easy it is and will be in the future for him to find a job that only requires 8 hours a day, he wont be bringing anything home, and he would get paid pretty well. Just knowing English here goes so far, where as in the small town it was just a novelty. This was huge when we figured this out. Its so freeing to know you dont have to put up with being walked on. The other thing is a social life. I actually have one!!!!! For those of you who have been reading a while you know that this was the big thing I missed from being in the states. Issac and I are both very social people. We love to be in a crowd and having get a together or even going to them is something we have always done so well at. That may sound funny but to be honest he and I have a hard time doing some things together. But we mesh so well when it comes to our kids or social events. I also love going places and just having such a span of a city to check out. There is still so much we haven't seen or done and there will be for some time. We actually have the option of seeing a movie at the theater in English now. We have Sams, Wal-Mart, Superama, better tiangis, and much better options when it comes to buying furniture for much cheaper. The girls have more options for different classes, for example we have Alana in dance now. She loves it and we are already looking forward to her performance in July. Most of all we have found our church. We actually had a family day at the park with church a couple weeks ago and it was so fun. Ill post some pics of it here. I am so overwhelmed by how much God has blessed my family. He really is good.





Saturday, March 5, 2011

Fun fun fun

I am absolutely loving living in the city. Iv meet so many gringas lately I just dont know what to do with myself. Yes I said gringas I know the proper term would be gueras but you know what I am one so I can say it. And some days I fee so set apart from this country that I feel like a true gringa. Truthfully things had gotten pretty smooth for me as far as not feeling sad or out of place. And then God moved me into the city where I feel at home. Seriously this place feels like St. Louis except everyone speaks Spanish of course. Super Bowl I actually went to a good friends house (Refried Dreams-check my list) to "watch" the game. Really it was just a good excuse to get together and hang out but that is what the game has always been for me. And Issac really enjoyed getting to sit around and watch the game with some other dudes. Then a different night on a spur of the moment type thing I got to go over and just have a glass of wine and talk. Wow, I finally have people to do something like that with. The good thing is she lives close enough to me that its not dangerous or scary for me to skip over to her house. Tonight I just got home from an awesome play date for the girls. I got to go hang out with the writer of the Vaca family blog you can check it out from the list of blogs I read. while there I got to meet another good friend of hers and all our kids just had so much fun tearing her house apart. Sorry girl I hope nothing was really broken. ;) We talked and talked and before I knew it the sun was on its way out of sight and I needed to get home. Joslin was out not even 5 min after we got in the truck and the whole way home Alana was telling me all about her new English speaking friends. Lily of course had no clue but I'm sure she will fit right in as they all grow a little more. I think the best thing is that as I was leaving we decided to make Easter plans. Easter is one of my favorite holidays. I love remembering that my Lord lives and at the same time I love baskets and candy and boiled eggs and Easter egg hunts and pretty little dresses and... and... I could go on for a bit. And on top of all this my cousin should be sending me a box chalked full of Easter stuff from the states. I feel like I'm on something I'm so hipper and excited about this. lol Well I of course forgot my camera so below are some other pics Iv been meaning to put up. As a family we had all gone on a walk one day and found these huge rolls of drafting paper out by someones trash waiting to be picked up. So we grabbed a couple. We are having lots of fun with it. I'm also adding a couple of the baby to show you how chunky shes getting. At her three month appointment she has more than doubled her wt. She is 6.25K!!! And of course the others are of my handsome husband making flower tortillas. Sigh!!! Could anyone ever wonder why I'm so in love?

Sorry I had to delete the pics off my blog, I have decided to keep my blog public no matter how many hateful comments I get. If I made my blog private it would defeat the purpose so instead I will just delete the pictures and refrain from using names in attempt to keep things safe for us. 




Thursday, February 24, 2011

Mexican Citizenship

Ok here is the list that I have for me. Mind you I think there is different list for almost every one. To get this list he had to know the following:
What type of FM2 Im on (mine is familial)And how long Iv had it (I just am now finishing my second renewal)
If My husband was Mexican (he is)
If I had Mexican children (I do)
And what Country I'm originally from. (USA)

1)you must be of age and civil rights

2)your oiginal document and two copies of the solicitudDNN-3, which can be downloaded from the website of the Foreign Relations Secrataria that can be filled by machine or by hand with black ink and print legibly. http://intapp.sre.gob.mx/images/stories/docnatnacio/dnn3.pdf

3)The original and three copies of all pages of your FM2 and you have been here for two full years after your first applications.

4)A citified, apostilled, and translated copy of your birth certificate and three photocopies of it.

5)The original and three photocopies of my passport

6)My husbands proof of citizenship: His birth certificate and two photocopies of it.

7)A certified copy and three photocopies of your marriage lic. from the regitro civil mexicano. And the date of marriage has to be two years before you apply.

8)A statement of truth for what you are applying for.

9)Original and three photocopies of the ID of my spouse.

10)Proof from the office of safety that I have no federal or local offenses. ( I think one of these has to come from Mexico city)

11)A statement of truth from my husband about what we are applying for

12)Prove that you can speak spanish through a person interview.(they told me to talk to Mexicans to practice) and take a history test which has a study guide. http:www.sre.gov.mx/tramites/nacionalidad/guia_estudio09.pdf

13)4 recent pictures in color, 4.5 by 3.4cms with white background, full face, without glasses, head uncovered.

14)payment of 1,250pesos

For an appointment write to lbguzman@sre.gov.mx